More books and about that vacation

As i said in a previous post or two I went on vacation last week, so didn’t get a whole lot of books like usual. I went to visit family and also got to tour the Lookout Mountain and Chickamauga battlefields in Tennessee. (Y’all saw the “ghost” right? It was the only one I *might* have seen. If there were more there, they were being gentlemen. (See why Caitlin loves her soldier ghost in the Antique Magic series, folks?) Anyway, the battlefield tour was so totally cool! :) I’ve been geeking out over the history of the two since then and reading whatever I can on it (slowpoke though I am about reading). Oh my gosh! It was so neat. Fear of heights, mainly forgotten. For a little while anyway. :) (Yes, I am a geek)

So these are what I got my hands on and am starting to poke through.

shermaninvadesjscalesSherman Invades Georgia by John R. Scales (who, yes, I went to the battlefield with so it is signed to me by the author! :)See that line above about geeking out at Lookout Mountain ;)).

Synopsis:

A longtime Special Forces officer with a Ph.D. in systems engineering presents a new perspective on one of the legendary campaigns of the Civil War, General William T. Sherman’s invasion of Georgia. Unlike most Civil War books that either treat individual battles and campaigns in a historical sense and give short shrift to planning, or study campaign planning with snippets from various campaigns to document specific features, General John Scales’s book takes advantage of modern planning techniques to fully examine what went into the Georgia campaign. He has limited the information in his book to that possessed by General Sherman at the time, as documented in his correspondence during the campaign and not in his after-the-fact reports and autobiography. Laid out in chapters that follow the format of an “estimate of the situation,” this book doesn’t simply recount the facts or attempt to provide a definitive history – other books do that – rather it offers a narrative of the campaign that illustrates a logical decision-making process as formulated in modern times. Published in cooperation with the Associations of the United States Army, the book serves two audiences: military professionals can use it for training purposes and Civil War buffs and interested laymen can gain a sense of the uncertainty that real commanders face by not having all the records of both sides at hand.

I also got: Union Soldier of the American Civil War (a Visual Reference) by Denis Hambucken and Chris Benedetto. (Yes, I bought a book about the North on the Southern battlefield’s store. Why, yes. I was blushing and ducking! But it’s for research,I swear!)

(Yes, I do kinda wish I’d gotten the companion Confederate Soldier of the American Civil War too). Are they suggesting story ideas? You bet. I’ve already got a WIP cooking. (*shh* If the muse hears me talking she’ll throw a  hissy fit). We’ll see what happens.

“Freaky Friday”: Old Ringgold Cemetery

One of the things I like about being a writer is my tendency to be bitten by the curiosity bug. The whole bit about the history I put in my books from time to time stems from that. This past week, I spent out of town visiting family but we took a little detour in our trip and visited Chattanooga, Tennessee. While there we met with  military historian Brigadier General (RT) John R. Scales, who wrote a book about Sherman’s Invasion of Georgia during the Civil War and with him toured the battlefields on Lookout Mountain (*cue Drive-by Truckers’ song here* ;)) and at Chickamauga. Reading about history is good for the brain, of course but actually seeing these places, especially this way, was really beyond neat. :) He took us all the way around the route the battle took and in the course of that to a little church that served as a hospital. Unfortunately, the church wasn’t open to visitors this day, but the cemetery next to it was open exploring. So I poked around because old cemeteries are always so atmospheric. The older the better, right? Unfortunately, when they are so old, the names are, oftentimes, rubbed off the tombstones. This one was no exception and I got some great shots.

But this being “Freaky Friday”, I had to show you this:

Old Ringgold Cemetery
See anything weird there? I don’t know what that is–(it looks like an old piece of plastic to me–or is it an odd smudge on the lens? Who knows?) but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t there when I snapped the picture!

William Shakespeare, Demon Hunter–#newrelease by S.G. Rogers

Painting depicting the Weird Sisters, by William Rimmer (February 20, 1816 – August 20, 1879) courtesy: wikipedia

S.G. Rogers has a new release today combining two of my favorite things, classic literature  and fantasy. :) So when I found out about Dancing With Raven, I asked her to come tell my readers a little more about it. Suzanne, take it away!

William Shakespeare, Demon Hunter.

by S.G. Rogers

Shakespearean plays were often populated by paranormal creatures, such as witches, ghosts, and monsters, but did you know William Shakespeare was secretly a demon hunter? That’s the premise of Dancing With Raven, in which a secret demon hunting organization, The Shakespearean Institute, is named after one of the most famous demon slayers of all time.

Comprised of the Nephilim (descendants of humans who had children with angels), Shakespeareans have one particularly critical prohibition: they are forbidden to bear a child on Leap Day. Such a child, if demonically sacrificed on his or her eighteenth birthday, will usher in the Apocalypse.

The violation of this prohibition forms the basis for Dancing With Raven.

 

Here’s the blurb: 
Tori has spent the past seventeen years trying to ignore her ability to see unnatural creatures. As she prepares to transition from high school to the world of professional ballet, however, seismic activity in Los Angeles is increasing and the number of demons is multiplying at an alarming rate. After a new student from London transfers to her performing arts school, she soon discovers her life has been a lie and someone wants her dead.

Raven’s father, a renowned British demon hunter, has tasked him with guarding the one person who can inadvertently bring about the end of the world. Unfortunately, Raven’s record of success has fallen short lately and his confidence is shaken. Worse, Tori seems determined to freeze him out. Can he win her trust quickly enough to prevent the Apocalypse?

Dancing With Raven is the first book of a series, and I’m having a wonderful time with it. If you like magical realism, the paranormal, and the performing arts, this book is for you! ~ S.G. Rogers

Dancing With Raven is available at Amazon.

Ooh! This sounds intriguing! Will Raven stop the Apocalypse, I wonder? The author wouldn’t tell me. What do  you think, readers?

Seeking a bay fort

West Metro Mommy Reads

I’ve been in Pensacola, the last week, running around like a madwoman, erm, that is, scouting future installments in my Antique Magic series of paranormal fantasy novels. Where was I scouting, you ask?

Fort Pickens Road sign

Yep. I finally got to Fort Pickens–and it was fantastic! So, for this Saturday Snapshot, I’ve got some site-seeing photos to share.

Dunes

Santa Rosa gnarled Tree by Juli D. Revezzo

Once you get on the island, there are just miles of these gorgeous sand dunes, and signs everywhere that warn drivers to watch out for nesting seabirds (unfortunately, we didn’t see any though. I guess it was too hot for them). Then the Gulf Islands National Seashore sign, but we’re still seeking out the fort.

Fort Pickens Gulf Islands National Seashore sign

Then finally, we come around a corner and see… (eep!) This:

Battery Langdon

Battery Langdon

Getting a little excited now! *rubs hands* We must be close. Yes. Once inside we see…

Guarding the bay

Guarding the bay

Was that all? Oh, no. But, patience, my friends. I’ll show you more next week! Have a great weekend.

To see more participants in Saturday Snapshots, go here.

And if you’d like to sample the (currently) freebie novella, see the post here for details on how to get it.

‘Roman’ roads were actually built by the Celts, new book claims – Telegraph

‘Roman’ roads were actually built by the Celts, new book claims – Telegraph.
I just found this online and you know? I almost feel like saying “Well, d’uh.” I mean, it’s not surprising. Really. I’m waiting for the day researchers find out we got a heck of a lot more from the ancient Celts than we know… After all, there were Celts spread all over Greece and Rome at one time. If nothing else, it’d make an interesting (at least to me) alternative history story. ;) Just thought I’d share.

Indie block party–day two–Passion’s Sacred Dance

Indie-block-party

My current novel just came out at the end of July, a paranormal romance entitled Passion’s Sacred Dance. Here’s the blurb:

cover art by Kim Mendoza

cover art by Kim Mendoza

Battling mounting debt, Stacy Macken is determined not to lose her historic art gallery. When Aaron Fielding appears and offers to help, she fights to keep the attraction sizzling between them from clouding her judgment. He may be her savior in disguise–but can she trust him?

Aaron intrigues her with tales of the Tuatha dé Danann, sworn warriors who protect humanity from the monsters seeking their destruction. If Aaron can prove what he claims, she would give up anything to help–even the gallery he claims is sacred ground. But with her property set to stage the next epic battle, she needs answers. An old family diary will confirm the ancient legend is true, if only they can find it in time.

If the battle is lost, the enemy will take control of Earth for the next five hundred years. Stacy and Aaron’s budding love might only complicate things.

It was inspired, believe it or not by a Megadeth song, “Foreclosure of a Dream”. The book went through tons of changes from the time I submitted it, until the day The Wild Rose Press released it last month, minor changes but the core of the story still remained. If you love paranormal romance, and Celtic Mythology, I hope you’ll like it.  It’s available at Amazon for Kindle only, right now, but the full release is coming November 22.

My current WIP is an as yet untitled follow up to this novel involving one of Stacy’s ancestors. That’s been kind of interesting since there’s a lot of research involved in getting the setting and time period just right. I’m writing it as fast as I can (research breaks included) so it will be out…well, when it’s out, but I hope sometime before the end of 2015.